Colonel Herbert E. Ross was born in Stockton, CA, and attended the College of the Pacific from 1937-1940. He entered the Army Air Corps in 1940 as an aviation cadet. Receiving his Second Lieutenant's commission and his pilot wings at Brooks Field, TX in 1941, he entered training for the P-40. He flew the P-36 and P-40 with his first tactical assignment at March Field, CA, as a member of the 14th Fighter Group.
As a WWII Ace, he downed nine enemy planes while flying 52 P-38 missions in North Africa. He was promoted to Lt Col in 1946.
The Korean Conflict brought recall to active duty in 1951, and he was initially assigned to fly the P-51 at George AFB, CA. He served a short tour with the 44th Infantry Division at Camp Cook, CA (now Vandenberg AFB).
Switching temporarily from fighters, Col Ross entered Combat Crew Training School at Langley AFB, VA to fly the B-26. He was sent overseas in 1953, winding up at Suwon AB, Korea, as commander of an F-86 Unit, the 80th Tactical Fighter Squadron. He remained in Korea for a year.
Back in the US, he was assigned to Foster AFB TX, flying F-100C aircraft. He was the first Director of Operations, 450th Fighter (Day) Wing. He received his regular Air Force commission here, and was promoted to Col in 1956 and later assigned as Commander of the 450th Fighter
In 1958 he returned to George AFB as Director of Operations, 31st TFW, flying F-100D aircraft. He remained there until his assignment to the Pacific Air Forces in 1960. He was the PACAF Chief of Safety until 1961, when he became 39th Air Division Director of Operations, Misawa AB, Japan. In 1963 he became the Division Vice Commander.
In 1964 Col Ross was assigned to the 354th Tactical Fighter Wing as Vice Commander. Upon transfer of Col Franklin Scott in 1965, he assumed interim command of the 354th until the arrival of Col Harold F. Price, new Wing Commander in 1965.
Col Ross retired from the Air Force in 1967. He passed away on July 20, 2008.